Each week we'll share our weekly menus as well as recipes for our family of 4, which includes two seemingly ravenous teenagers (& several of their buddies) and two adults. I mention that we include the kids' friends in our menu because it's become a habit for them to have friends over several times per week. For the past 15 years, we've spent, on average, less than $250 per month for groceries (& household items- cleaners, detergents).
Our menus include breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. They also include various beverages. I do not include pet foods, although over the years we've often made our own for our pets.
On occasion we DO use coupons; with that said, our weekly menus are NOT based on coupon use. There are really great deals out there- and oftentimes if one is diligent enough, one can get free groceries/cleaners, etc. However, this requires considerable effort, regardless of the sites that tell you it's simple. Here are several reasons that this is not so:
- It requires you to go to several different stores several times per week in order to find and take advantage of the best deals. Each and every time that you enter a store the chances of impulse buying increases. (Read More about the Dirty Tricks Retailers Play)
- It requires you to find,buy and clip coupons, or seek them out online from "coupon clipping services" and purchase them, which is time consuming.
- Stores are becoming less and less helpful at receiving multiple coupons in a transaction.
- Cashiers at said stores are often not educated about basic coupon lingo such as the difference between a purchase (single item) and a transaction (entire order) and make life a living hell when attempting to use coupons.
With that said, we do sometimes use coupons, but only on when it's absolutely convenient for us.